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Safety & Navigation

Permits and Licences

Dredge and Work Licences

Dredge Licence Applications

The Marine Management Organisation (MMO) is responsible for the licencing of dredging and disposal of dredge material in the UK. Applying for dredge and disposal licences from the MMO can be a lengthy process but there are some measures in place that attempt to reduce the burden on small operators. Check the MMO’s website for the most up-to-date information, including exemptions for some scientific research, very small navigational dredges, extended licence periods and an accelerated licence process.

The MMO encourages applicants to engage with them as early as possible to discuss the need for marine licences and other statutory consents.

Contact the MMO on: 0300 123 1032 or email marine.consents@marinemanagement.org.uk

If you wish to carry out any dredging in Cowes Harbour you will also need to submit a ‘Dredge Licence Application‘ to Cowes Harbour Commission (CHC). CHC will consider the application with regard to the likely impact on the safety of navigation and also as one of the statutory consultees of the MMO.

Dredge licence applications advertised for consultation are published in the News section of the CHC website.

CHC will work with harbour users and statutory authorities to ensure the balance between the use of the estuary and its environment is maintained. We do this through the Medina Estuary Baseline Document which aims to streamline the maintenance dredging application process within sites like the Medina that are designated for nature conservation.


Works Licence Applications

In order to carry out works within the jurisdiction of Cowes Harbour Commission (CHC), consents and licences may be required from several authorities. This includes, but is not limited to, the following:

Cowes Harbour Authority
 – Grant licences (under the Cowes Harbour Revision Order 1989 – Harbour Works and Dredging) to construct, alter, renew or extend works within the harbour up to the mean high water springs (MHWS) mark. A Works Licence Application must be completed and submitted to the CHC before any works can commence. Post: Harbour Office, Town Quay, Cowes, PO31 7AS or Email: chc@cowes.co.uk

Marine Management Organisation (MMO) – A Marine Licence is required for many activities involving a deposit or removal of a substance or object below MHWS, or in any tidal river to the extent of the tidal influence and up to the boundary of the UK territorial seas.

You will also need to seek the applicable planning permission from the Isle of Wight Council and the consent of the landowner.